By Benedict Mayaki
The General Secretary of the Bolivian Bishop’s Conference, Fr. José Fuentes Cano, has called on the candidates of the Bolivian presidential elections, slated for May 3, 2020, to concentrate more on the progress of the country and avoid lies and insults during the campaign period.
This call was made during his homily on Sunday, 16 February, in the wake of the disputed vote that triggered the social revolt in the country and led to the resignation of Evo Morales, the former Bolivian president.
"We ask the candidates that all projects and programs be driven by love for their brothers and sisters and a constant commitment to the growth of the Bolivian people.”
Fr. Cano insisted: "The life we lead is what makes us Christ's – Christians. This is fundamental for believers, but it is more fundamental for candidates and, more generally, for politicians who declare themselves Christians. It is not the profession of faith that makes them similar to Christ, but the decisions they make, their morals, the life they lead."
"Speaking ill, insulting has become a kind of pastime, almost to keep attention and not to get bored," Fr. Cano said.
"Love, reconciliation, forgiveness, is what makes us Christ. This is the offering pleasing to God," stressed Fr. Fuentes Cano. "Being Christian does not only mean not killing, which is already important, but also taking care of one's brother or sister. Every day we have before our eyes so many attitudes, even habits, of unscrupulous attacks, exercised mostly with the tongue, towards our brothers and sisters. If we continue to offer loans, to say prayers, to practice fasting, without these actions making us people who love, all this is useless".
Later this year, Bolivia will elect a president, vice president, and all the members of the legislative assembly – 36 senators and 130 deputies.
There are eight presidential candidates. Four of them are running on a coalition ticket and the others are running with individual parties. Seven of them have the common goal of preventing the return of Evo Morales’ party - Movement for Socialism (MAS).